Sword of Sodan is a hack and slash video game released for the Amiga game system in 1989 by Discovery Software. In 1993 it was also released for the Apple Macintosh System 7 by Bethesda Softworks, and Electronic Arts released a scaled down port version for the Sega Genesis in 1990.
Set in a fictional medieval time, Lordan is the ruler of the northern kingdom. Zoras, an evil necromancer, is in his tower made of human bones, planning to make a second attempt to overthrow Lordan, after his first attempt was defeated by Sodan, the hero.
Zoras studied ancient parchments where he learned to experiment with long forgotten spells. His new knowledge enabled him to conjure all kinds of nightmarish creatures, which he sent marching towards Lordan's castle, leaving a path of death and destruction.
To protect his twin children, son Brodan and daughter Shardan, Lordan arranged for them to be taken from the castle across the Cthol mountains to the farthest corner of the land. After Lordan's defeat and death at Zoras' hands, his children were raised by an old, bitter man, who also trained them in the art of sword combat.
Before they start their journey to defeat Zoras, the old man hands over to them the sword of Sodan. Armed with the sword, they fight their way to castle Craggamoor and face the tyrannical Zoras. After they defeat Zoras, the people accept them as the true rulers and saviors of the land.
There are two playable characters: Brodan or his twin sister Shardan, whose gameplay characteristics are identical despite their physical differences. The character walks in a horizontally scrolled world from left to right, defeating enemies with their sword, wielded either standing or kneeling. Though the player is also equipped with a shield, it is merely for decoration. It was completely removed from the Sega Genesis version.
Before each level starts, a map appears, showing the player's progress through the land on their way to castle Craggamoor. Scrolls give additional information about the current location. Once the player enters the castle, the map is replaced by a gloomy picture of an outside view of the castle. Most of the levels consist of simply fighting enemies with the sword, but sometimes the player must avoid traps or solve puzzles.
The player starts with five lives, an energy meter and a hit strength level. A player's energy is reduced every time they are hit by enemies, but their hit strength can be increased by using potions. There are different types of potions. Some increase hit strength, some give an extra life, some provide short-term invincibility, while still others kill the current opponent immediately.
There are eleven different areas, five in the area surrounding the castle, and six within. The player starts at their own city gate, and progresses through the countryside towards the castle, passing through city streets, a forest and a graveyard. Once within the castle, the player wanders through catacomb-like levels, which lead to the wizard's tower at the end. The world is inhabited by 13 different enemies and a single supporting character, the ostrich-like creature called "the animal".
While the gameplay mechanic is very similar to the Amiga version, there are several differences. First, enemies attack from both directions, instead of the single direction in the Amiga game. Second, the player relies more regularly on potions, which are also dropped more frequently. Third, the areas have been reduced from eleven to eight, with some completely deleted (e.g. the forest), while others combined. Finally, there are only eight enemies, as opposed to the thirteen in the Amiga game, however, the enemies are spawned more frequently, and in different areas.